Columbia Gorge AVA

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Columbia Gorge AVA
Wine region
Columbia Gorge AVA map.JPG
Type American Viticultural Area
Year established 2004[1]
Country United States
Part of Oregon, Washington
Climate region Maritime/continental
Total area 4,432 acres (1,794 ha)
Size of planted vineyards 300 acres (120 ha)
Grapes produced Barbera, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Chenin blanc, Gewurztraminer, Lemberger, Merlot, Pinot blanc, Pinot gris, Pinot noir, Sangiovese, Sauvignon blanc, Syrah, Tempranillo, Viognier, Zinfandel[2]

The Columbia Gorge AVA is an American Viticultural Area which includes land surrounding the Columbia River Gorge, straddling the border between Oregon and Washington. Due to the unique climate and geography found in the gorge, this AVA exhibits a wide range of terroir in a relatively small region; it is marketed as a "world of wine in 40 miles".[3]


The Columbia Gorge AVA consists of four counties; Hood River and Wasco counties in Oregon, and Skamania and Klickitat counties in Washington.[4] The region stretches from Hood River, Oregon and White Salmon, Washington in the west, to Biggs Junction, Oregon and Goldendale, Washington in the east. It includes the river valleys of the Hood River and Deschutes River in Oregon, and the Klickitat River and Little Klickitat River in Washington. [5]

The Columbia River (shown here in Hood River County, Oregon) is at the heart of the Columbia Gorge AVA

As this region lies to the east of the summits of nearby Mount Hood and Mount Adams, it is in rain shadow of these Cascade volcanoes. The region is significantly drier than the Portland metropolitan area to the west. Annual precipitation ranges from 36 inches (91 cm) at the western end of the range, to only 10 inches (25 cm) in the eastern part. Elevation in the region varies considerably, increasing as one travels from the Columbia River into the plateaus on either side, and the strong Columbia Gorge winds also play a factor in the region's climate. This allows a wide variety of grapes to be grown in the Columbia Gorge.[6]

The region has nearly 40 vineyards, growing a wide variety of grapes, including Syrah, Pinot noir, Chardonnay, Gewürztraminer, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot gris, Riesling, and Sangiovese.[3]


  1. ^ Code of Federal Regulations. "§ 9.178 Columbia Gorge." Title 27: Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; Part 9 — American Viticultural Areas; Subpart C — Approved American Viticultural Areas. Retrieved Jan. 30, 2008.
  2. ^ Appellation America (2007). "Columbia Gorge (AVA): Appellation Description". Retrieved Jan. 30, 2008.
  3. ^ a b Columbia Gorge Wine (2008). "Columbia Gorge Vineyards". Retrieved Jan. 30, 2008.
  4. ^ Federal Register May 10, 2004 (Volume 69, Number 90)
  5. ^ Appellation America Columbia Gorge AVA
  6. ^ Columbia Gorge wine Description of grapes and wines of Columbia Gorge AVA

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 45°43′05″N 121°29′46″W / 45.718°N 121.496°W / 45.718; -121.496